On Hydrologic Similarity: 1. Derivation of the Dimensionless Flood Frequency Curve

Eric F. Wood, Charles S. Hebson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

52 Scopus citations


The problem of flood frequency similarity among river basins is analyzed by deriving a scale‐independent, dimensionless flood frequency curve. The model is formulated using dimensionless rainfall inputs and a dimensionless basin response function. For the rainfall intensity the probability distribution for dimensionless areal rainfall is derived and depends upon a geoclimatic scaling factor which is a function of the basin size and the rainfall areal correlation structure. Rainfall duration is scaled by τ, a characteristic basin time. This same parameter is used to develop a dimensionless geomorphologic unit hydrograph. The derived dimensionless flood frequency curve can be used to further understand the variability of flood statistics within a contiguous area and to group stations for regional flood frequency analysis using statistical techniques.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1549-1554
Number of pages6
JournalWater Resources Research
Issue number11
StatePublished - Oct 1986

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Water Science and Technology


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